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DieselD24

Engine Block Warmer

36 posts in this topic

I plugged in the truck yesterday for the first time. water temperature was at 68 degrees. Does this sound about right for a truck that's been plugged in for a few hours?

--- Update to the previous post...

Sorry, 48 degrees. Not 68.

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How cold was it? It takes a while to warm up when its cold, I usually plug mine up all night and its about 110 in the morning.

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It was about 30-35. I'm beginning to wonder if the heater even works now that you mention yours is at 110.

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When you plug it in, listen closely and it will sound kinda like a coffee maker.

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When yo plug it in you should hear a boiling noise there in the front of the block. Usually by morning I notice the thermostat housing is warm to the touch. As for plugging in you need it once the temps fall below 0*F... It really does help with cold morning start ups. But I highly suggest you try and get the truck into cover of a garage or shop. Trying to heat a huge 1,000 pound case iron block with 6 gallons of coolant in temps below 0*F with a 750 Watt heater just doesn't do a hell of a lot. Like myself I got a unheated shop so I rather dump the heat into the shop that into the atomsphere... Believe it or not the 750W heater can keep my shop right at 32-35*F at 0*F night... :smart:

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mine sits outside on the curb and with it plugged in all night it gets to around 87-89*F with the current temps of about 14-16*f overnight.

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I will have to plug it into a different AC outlet. I don't think it worked with the outlet I used.I was even curious, if I would hear any noise when I plugged it in at the front of the truck but, didn't hear anything.

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When it has been really cold like -29 my truck plugged in got to 68 but normally its aroud 89, I normally only plug in when its around 0 or colder

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Take a DVM and measure the ohm value on the block heater cord and tell me what you get.

I know ISX has the coversion table for this... :smart:

I just went out there and I got 20.7 ohm's.

--- Update to the previous post...

I think I got it confirmed it doesn't work. I plugged it in at 3 different outlets and didn't hear a thing. :banghead::banghead::banghead:

--- Update to the previous post...

Why doesn't the Ram FSM have the Diagnosis and Testing on it?

I know it's a coil and measure the resistance on it but, what's the spec?

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Being you measured 20 ohms tells me there is something going on yet... I would check the cord for good connection using the Ohms again make sure you have 0 Ohms from pin to plug. Then check just the heater element for ohm and see what you get. Check the plug for oxidation the dark funk on the plug will cause the plug to get warm. I got to lightly sand my plug now and then to get the oxidation off the prongs... Should be a nice bright brass color.

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Actually, 19.2 Ohms is 750 watts. 20.7 works out to 695. So your element is fine. When you plug it in, it will sit there for a few seconds then you will hear it turn on. It isn't that loud so you can't hear it if there is any other noises around. If it were me, I would plug it in for an hour then feel the block right next to where the block heater goes into the block. It should be warm, if not, you got other issues going on. Where did you measure the resistance? At the prongs on the cord or at the prongs on the element? I would measure from the end of the cord, that way it tests the cord and the element. The ground and neutral (taller prong) should be 0 ohms. The neutral to the hot should be 19.2 (20.7 is close enough).

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Just though of another issue might effect this problem... What is the size of your extension cord? Like I've got my RV sitting in the yard and plugged into 120 VAC (actually 123-125 VAC out here) and have a small electric heater inside with my DVM plugged into the wall socket and turn the heater on the voltage falls to 105 VAC turn it up on high and it falls again to 98 VAC. This is 16 AWG shop extension cord at a total distance of 100 feet. But now switch over to a heavy shop extension cord the voltage loss is less. So if you got too light of a extension cord ran to far (too long) it might reduce the over all voltage supplied to the block heater.

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my block heater trips my GCFI circuit in my garage. not immediately, but sometime in the night, it trips the breaker.my '96 block heater didn't.

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The extension cord is a 14 gauge @ 50 feet. I use about 47 or 48 feet of it from the outlet to the truck. I got an extra 2 feet give or take of the cord that I don't need.I just got home and plugged it in, and tried listening for any noises - none heard.I also took the capscrew off and looked at the prongs going to the heater element. Would it matter if the cord was plugged in wrong at the heater element?I did a little bit of surfin' lastnight and came across a site or forum, which I can't remember the site it was but, the guy had mentioned from hot to neutral you should have 21 ohms and from hot or neutral to the ground prong 0 ohms.I did the hot to neutral prongs and came up with 20.7I proceeded to do the hot and neutral to ground prong and had a constant fluctuation. This is the part that doesn't make any sense.What am I doing wrong? :banghead::banghead:

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i have never heard a sound from the block heater, and my coolant is never warmed up. i know it works cause when i fire it up, you can tell a difference. it warms up much faster, less cranking, and just feels better than a frozen motor. :2cents: my truck spends its days in the driveway and nights working.

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If your coolant isnt warm then I dont see how its working because thats the point of the heater.:shrug:

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The extension cord is a 14 gauge @ 50 feet. I use about 47 or 48 feet of it from the outlet to the truck. I got an extra 2 feet give or take of the cord that I don't need. I just got home and plugged it in, and tried listening for any noises - none heard. I also took the capscrew off and looked at the prongs going to the heater element. Would it matter if the cord was plugged in wrong at the heater element? I did a little bit of surfin' lastnight and came across a site or forum, which I can't remember the site it was but, the guy had mentioned from hot to neutral you should have 21 ohms and from hot or neutral to the ground prong 0 ohms. I did the hot to neutral prongs and came up with 20.7 I proceeded to do the hot and neutral to ground prong and had a constant fluctuation. This is the part that doesn't make any sense. What am I doing wrong? :banghead::banghead:

The engine got to be cold when you plug it in... A warm engine will make no noise. :duh: I would try and measure the block temp before you plug in the heater and then measure the block temp after several hours. Thats all I can say...

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The extension cord is a 14 gauge @ 50 feet. I use about 47 or 48 feet of it from the outlet to the truck. I got an extra 2 feet give or take of the cord that I don't need. I just got home and plugged it in, and tried listening for any noises - none heard. I also took the capscrew off and looked at the prongs going to the heater element. Would it matter if the cord was plugged in wrong at the heater element? I did a little bit of surfin' lastnight and came across a site or forum, which I can't remember the site it was but, the guy had mentioned from hot to neutral you should have 21 ohms and from hot or neutral to the ground prong 0 ohms. I did the hot to neutral prongs and came up with 20.7 I proceeded to do the hot and neutral to ground prong and had a constant fluctuation. This is the part that doesn't make any sense. What am I doing wrong? :banghead::banghead:

Try removing the block heater cord at the block where it hooks up to the block heater element. It should unthread. Look inside the cup that threads up to the block heater element to ensure the contacts are clean and not arced out/melted or corroded. My wife's truck's block heater stopped working and it turned out to be a bad cord when I checked. I keep a spare cord and block heater element just in case something like this happens. I ordered mine from Geno's Garage. They had the best prices I could find on both. http://www.genosgarage.com/prodinfo.asp?number=3975628 http://www.genosgarage.com/prodinfo.asp?number=HEATER_CABLE_FL
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I am getting no where with this!Why would it matter if the block is warm or not, shouldn't it work regardless?The tests I did were performed lastnight, not this morning after I got home.I did a thorough inspection of the heater element and it was clean as can be. No signs of dirt, contamination, or anything of that sort. I am going to test the prongs on the heater element itself when I get home and see what I come up with. Anybody know what reading I should have, would it be the same reading of 20-21 ohms?

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I am getting no where with this! Why would it matter if the block is warm or not, shouldn't it work regardless? The tests I did were performed lastnight, not this morning after I got home. I did a thorough inspection of the heater element and it was clean as can be. No signs of dirt, contamination, or anything of that sort. I am going to test the prongs on the heater element itself when I get home and see what I come up with. Anybody know what reading I should have, would it be the same reading of 20-21 ohms?

I just said this many posts ago. The element is 750 watts, which is 19.2 Ohms at 120V. If you are at 20.7 it is fine. You have to read the posts to get somewhere with this..

Actually, 19.2 Ohms is 750 watts. 20.7 works out to 695. So your element is fine. When you plug it in, it will sit there for a few seconds then you will hear it turn on. It isn't that loud so you can't hear it if there is any other noises around. If it were me, I would plug it in for an hour then feel the block right next to where the block heater goes into the block. It should be warm, if not, you got other issues going on.

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If you still show a similar resistance on the prongs of the block heater element, that indicates that that element is good. I strongly suspect a bad cord. Just so I am follow your steps. You are allowing the block heater to be plugged in for at least 3 hours right? It takes a LONG time to warm up that much steel and iron. Some block heaters make the sizzling sound and some don't. After the block heater has been plugged in for about 3 hours, place you hand on the water neck on top of the engine. It should feel noticably warm to the touch and warmer than the rest of the engine.

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I had it plugged in all day yesterday and it didn't warm up. Water temperature was at 23 degrees.I'm suspecting a bad cord as well. I will find out once I test the heater element.

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